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Chef Massimo Bottura Has Re-Invented The Soup Kitchen

Updated: Aug 4, 2023

Chef Massimo Bottura believes in reducing food waste and cooking sustainably. Born and raised in Moderna Italy he looks at food in a critical way. He trained in New York under Chef Alan Ducasse and learned how to develop recipes and modernize traditional Italian recipes. His recipes would shock your Italian grandmother, mother, or aunt.

Photo Source: Teintera Saber

His first restaurant called Osteria Francescana is known for changing traditional Italian recipes. His restaurant serves ravioli with black truffles & foie gras, spaghetti with green tomatoes and buffalo mozzarella, and lobster in double sauce. The restaurant has a pasta and bean dish that uses cream, red chicory, bacon, bean cream, Parmigiano crust, and rosemary foam. The Adriatic Chowder has razor clams, snails, blue lobster, truffles r inside a crust or pot pie.

The recipes at this restaurant engage all the senses. He and his staff look at traditional recipes from a different point of view. This restaurant is located in Moderna Italy. To find recipes for Italian cooking visit Massimo Bottura 's website La Cucina Italia

Photo Source: Wikipedia

Chef Bottura and his wife Lara Gilmore founded a nonprofit organization in 2016 called Food For Soul. Their mission is to use 1.3 billion tons of food wasted every year to feed the poor. At the Expo Milan in 2015 he set up a community-based kitchen and dining room in an abandoned theater in a low-income area.

After the exposition was over 15 tons of food were left. The food was cooked by 65 well known chefs to feed the poor in Milan. They feed those that were homeless and the food insecure. Their refettorios have redefined what a soup kitchen is today. Their restaurants and kitchens that Food for Soul built are cultural projects. They create menus from leftover food and design three healthy courses per meal.

The chefs that work there have to use every ingredient sent to them and provide a tasty three course meal. Guests are called by name and the dining areas have experienced waiters and trained chefs. The menu changes daily depending on what comes in from food suppliers. They serve runaways, poor, homeless, and refugees.

Over the last several years Food For Soul has opened several refettorios or soup kitchens around the world. They are open Monday thru Friday to serve healthy meals to the under privileged. Some locations are Harlem, San Francisco, Paris, Milan, Geneva, and Naples

Photo Source: Thinking Humanity

In 2021 he opened a refettorio in Harlem at the Emanuel AME Church located at 37 West 119th Street. Before they opened they delivered meals to people suffering from food insecurity since 2020. The refettorio in Harlem provides healthy meals to the poor and job training.

Massimo Bottura says the most rewarding part of his career is his work with Food For Soul and finding ways to help the poor and cut down on food waste in the world.

Refettorio in Milan Italy: Photo Source: Permalano IT


A Guide To Chef Massimo Botturas Work and Philosophy, Masterclass

Massimo Bottura Wants You to Stop Wasting Food by Aryn Baker, Time, January 7, 2022

Massimo Bottura's Harlem Soup Kitchen is Slated For A Full Opening This Fall, Eater, Tanay Warekar, March 30 2021

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